VA Linux Systems is bidding to become an application service provider (ASP) with plans to launch a hosting service for open source software projects.
Sourceforge will provide developers with tools and resources to create open source projects in a collaborative environment over the Internet. The service will also provide access to previous projects and an archived history of development work.
It can be accessed for free at Sourceforge.net. Commercial packages start at $600 per user.
Clive Longbottom, analyst at Strategy Partners, said this is an example of a Linux company wanting to make money out of .com companies, but is really "a subset of what Oracle and other ASPs are already doing. HP and Oracle would host projects with Linux involved. Sourceforge will be focused on Linux only."
He said it would differ from other Linux projects in the open source community that are "hosted by academia. They are more source sites and are not authorised for ebusiness."
Richard Wendland, ASP analyst for Durlacher Research, said that VA's hosting service is a good idea: "Microsoft and Lotus are piling into the ASP market. It makes perfect sense for a Linux company to do the same."
Open source projects now being hosted on Sourceforge include Topaz, a project to create the next generation of the Perl programming language, and the Berlin Project, a next-generation graphical system for Linux and other Unix operating systems.
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